Champagne Charles Ellner
Champagne Charles Ellner, in the heart of Epernay, was and is a family business. At the end of the 19th century, Charles Emile Ellner, the founder of the House, began acquiring small vineyards in Epernay while also starting his career as a professional “riddler”. In 1905, he first released Champagne under his own name. His son Pierre and his 4 grandsons developed the business, and in 1972 the company became “Negociant Manipulant”.
Today the house is run by Jean-Pierre Ellner, one of the grandsons of the estate’s founder. His nephews Frederic and Arnaud Ellner manage vineyards and production. His daughters Emmanuelle Foulon Ellner and Alexandra Ellner also work at the estate.
The House of Ellner possesses about 50 hectares of vineyards, located across more than 15 villages in the Champagne region. The Ellner vineyards produce about 50% of the total grape crop.
None of Charles Ellner’s wines see malolactic fermentation. All are fermented in stainless-steel tanks to preserve fresh fruit flavors (only the Chardonnay blended into the vintage wines spends a few months in giant oak barrels between primary fermentation and bottling). They are then left to sit on their lees for a minimum of 4 years (the law is only 18 months) to allow the wines to soften a bit, fill out, and become beautifully drinkable upon release yet ageable at the same time.
The painting which inspired Charles Ellner’s iconic labels has been damaged and the identity of the artist has been lost. In 1986, the estate decided to include the painting on their labels. In 2012, Champagne Charles Ellner gave a more modern touch to their labels, focusing on one of the women in the painting.